Whereas, due to a number of unfortunate situations that have come to light of late within the Jewish community, heightened awareness and sensitivity with regard to the ethical and moral conduct of businesses has become an ever-widening public concern within the Orthodox world. We realize that we must clearly and unambiguously demonstrate that we wholeheartedly and consistently live by the spiritual principles which we regularly study and that our religious leadership espouses, in order to win the hearts and minds of our idealistic young, combat cynicism and compartmentalization among Orthodox adults and earn the continuing respect of the broader society in which we live; and,
Whereas we very much support and are encouraged by the Rabbinical Council of America’s initiatives to date that have resulted in the Glatt Yosher program this past September, in which Rabbis were encouraged to focus upon ethical issues during their High Holiday messages, as well as the release this past January of the Jewish Principles and Ethical Guidelines for the Kosher Food Industry. However, we believe that this program and articulation of high moral standards for the food industry are just the beginning, and we must continue to develop and propagate similar initiatives so that everyone in the Orthodox community be challenged on an ongoing basis to refine their personal and professional lives in every respect;
Therefore, the Rabbinical Council of America resolves:
• That further sets of guidelines be developed for e.g., the financial, legal, education and personal counseling professions.
• That materials and programs for shuls and schools be developed and made available so that communities and religious institutions can grapple with and benefit from on a regular basis heightened consciousness concerning ethical and moral issues.
• That regular public seminars and conferences be conducted by the RCA, the OU, Yeshiva University, etc. leading to the publication and wide dissemination of papers and articles that explore new parameters of ethical and moral dilemmas as technology and social dynamics continue to evolve in the 21st century.